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Zambia Air Force celebrates introducing new Enstrom helicopters into service



enstromEnstrom continues to grow its global footprint. On March 25, Zambia Air Force (ZAF) welcomed two newly delivered Enstrom 480B turbine helicopters into its fleet. Enstrom representatives joined ZAF personnel for an induction ceremony in Lusaka, featuring speeches, food, photos, and traditional entertainment.

“The induction ceremony was amazing!” said Enstrom Senior Tech Representative Bayard duPont. “It included amazing dance choreography, courtesy of the Air Power Cultural Dance Troupe, and that was truly special.”

Enstrom representatives finalized the sale in February 2023 with the Zambia Ministry of Defence. South Africa Safomar Aviation Group assisted in managing logistics, specifications, and helicopter configuration. Safomar operates a regional MRO and a flight school, helping maintain Enstrom helicopters throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

ZAF Commander, Lieutenant General Oscar Msitu Nyoni, said the Air Force will use these helicopters for training and utility missions.

Enstrom CCO Dennis Martin said, “We are very excited to be partnering with the Zambian Air Force. Beyond just typical uses like flight training or utility operations, these versatile helicopters will be used for missions like anti-poaching and public safety. They are going to be productive assets for the Zambian people.”

The 480B, with its high-level performance and quick reconfiguration options, will offer the ZAF a level of efficiency and flexibility that other light helicopters cannot. Each helicopter is equipped with the latest in Garmin avionics and glass panels. One helicopter will feature a full glass panel, the other, an analog hybrid, allowing student pilots to gain experience with both.

As part of the contract, Enstrom hosted Zambian mechanics in October 2023 for a week of maintenance training.

“They took their studies very seriously,” said Martin. “We made it clear, they will always have our support, but given the distance between Menominee and Lusaka, we believed it essential for local Zambians to understand all the subtle nuances of an Enstrom’s inner workings without having to rely on experts seven time zones away.”